Prior to having children, I never gave trains, or public transport for that matter, a moment’s thought. Except perhaps for the irritatingly regular grumble that my commute was delayed by a late-running service, or that we were all crammed in like cattle. Fast forward nearly 4 years, and I am amused by just how much trains have become a big part of our lives, all because of one small boy with a BIG passion.
Living where we live in South-East London, there aren’t many tubes, just very regular overground services to access other parts of The Big Smoke. As a result, we travel on them several times a week to visit attractions, parks and friends, and both Freddie and Sasha are travel pros. The look on Freddie’s face when we pass a station, or even better, that a station is a junction, and therefore has many platforms, buffers and the like, really is one to behold. It lights up like candles on a cake, and never fails to make me smile!
Freddie’s interest in trains began from the moment he could crawl confidently and push a train, or other vehicle, around the floor. This progressed to absolutely loving a simple wooden figure-of-eight train track we bought him for Christmas aged 22 months. A lucky purchase from a charity shop of an enormous bag of wooden track and accessories followed, and the boy was totally hooked! We have expanded this collection over the last couple of years, and it’s one of the few toys that I don’t actually mind adding to, it gets played with so much.
Due to Freddie’s obsession, trains really have become our new ‘normal’. If you’d have asked me 4 years ago if I would know nearly every train line in South London and all their stations and stops, would spent ages watching You Tube videos of trains on the Ipad and construct train tracks that would make a professional engineer proud, I would have laughed. And then laughed some more.
This is truly ones of the pleasures of having children- you will never know until they arrive what they will love, what their interests will be, what brings their little hearts so much joy on a daily basis, no matter how much you try and imagine, and that makes parenthood all the more exciting.
I have a new-found respect for my own Mum, who spent HOURS of her weekends standing in wet, muddy fields watching me ride in competitions, because it was my passion. It sure as hell wasn’t hers, but she was so supportive.
So despite not quite having the same desire for trains as my son, it’s definitely now a little part of everyday life that we share. My brain has certainly made way for trivial facts about trains, more than likely at the expense of other grey matter and other things that probably aren’t as important as thoughts about trains.
Love in our family is standing on a bridge at Beckenham Junction train station, and spending half an hour just waiting and watching the fast train to Ramsgate speed on by, or see the local-service to Victoria slowly pull in.
But you know what? I wouldn’t change it for the world. :-)
Linking up with Mummy, Daddy, Me and The Ordinary Moments